This weekend was always going to belong to The Wolverine. As the only film opening in wide release, James Mangold’s dark take on the clawed mutant opened strong and walked away with about $21 million on Friday, which includes the $4 million it made in theaters that began showing the movie at 10 p.m. on Thursday night. Also, 3,063 out of its 3,924 locations are showing the X-Men pic in 3-D. The $120 million Hugh Jackman-starrer should easily make at least $60 million by the end of the weekend, slightly lower than some estimates — including ours — which placed it in the $70 million range. The opening is not quite as strong as 2009′s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which had a $34.4 million Friday, and did not benefit from 3-D surcharges. Out of all the X-Men films, The Wolverine is tracking on the low end of the franchise, sitting between 2000′s X-Men which opened at $20.8 million on a Friday in mid-July, and X-Men: First Class which had a $21.4 million Friday.
In second place, James Wan’s possession horror movie The Conjuring experienced a normal 56.6% drop off and made $7.4 million on Friday in 3,022 locations. The modest $20 million flick has made $69.1 million domestically, and this is only its second weekend in theaters.
Universal’s Despicable Me 2 took third place on Friday with $4.8 million. In its four weeks in theaters, the $76 million sequel has made an estimated $295.2 million domestically. By comparison, Monsters University has been in theaters for six weeks and has made about $253.4 million to date domestically.
Turbo continues to stay in the top five despite a rocky start. It also blew past last week’s dismal R.I.P.D. which dropped about 63% to ninth place in its second week. The Ryan Reynolds-voiced animated comedy brought in about $4.0 million on Friday for Fox. The $135 million family movie has made $46.5 million so far.
Coming in fifth place was Adam Sandler’s Grown Ups 2, with $3.7 million, bringing its domestic total to $93.8 million in its third weekend in theaters.
The ’90s-set R-rated teen sex comedy The To-Do List opened in 591 theaters this weekend with a $590K Friday, and Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen’s latest, made $175,991 on Friday in six theaters in New York and Los Angeles. With such a strong cast and even more positive reviews, Blue Jasmine should enjoy a healthy run as awards season movies start taking over the theaters.
Sundance hits Fruitvale Station and The Way, Way Back also went into wide release this weekend, but only Fruitvale Station made the top 10 on Friday with $1.4 million. The Way, Way Back settled in at 11th place with $970K, and boasting a domestic total of $6.6 million.
Check back tomorrow for the full box office report.